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Promote Your Published Paper with a Video Abstract

Adapted from SAGE Publishing’s Video Abstract Guidelines

Authors today can have a tremendous impact on how their published papers are discovered, recognized and used throughout the scientific community. Video abstracts require relatively little effort or technical expertise and can serve authors as an especially compelling way to increase awareness, readership and citations.



Planning Your Script

Begin by outlining the points you’d like to cover before you begin filming. Try not to make your notes too rigid – it will be less engaging for viewers if you read directly from a script. Consider:

  • Your Article – What’s it about and why is it important? What makes it innovative in the field?
  • What’s Next – Where is this research or field of study going in the future? Where would you like to see it go?
  • Audience – How might your paper be of interest to non-scientific viewers and readers, or how might it impact policy or society?

Be sure to encourage viewers to read your article. You also could invite viewers to ask questions via your Twitter or Facebook page (maybe suggest a hashtag). For more ideas, visit these helpful blog posts:


Best Practices

  • Be succinct. Make your video 2-3 minutes long, and no longer than 5 minutes.
  • Take your time! Speak clearly and slowly. Remember, you can record as many versions as you like!
  • Get written permission from any copyright holders for any third-party content included in your video (e.g. music, film, images). Example.
  • Important: DO NOT include ANY overt product promotion/advertising.




  • Choose a neutral, flat, still background to avoid distracting viewers. Light should come from in front of you, not behind you. Eliminate any potential background noise.
  • Position yourself as central in the camera’s view finder/screen and sit an appropriate distance away so that your upper body fills the screen.
  • If you choose to use cue-cards or read from a monitor, place these at eye level behind the camera, so that you can read them while maintaining natural eye-contact with the camera/viewer.
  • Use a tripod or place the camera/recording device on a flat surface to avoid shaking or swaying.
  • Ask a friend to start and stop the recording.


Equipment List

  • Internet-enabled computer or smartphone
  • Webcam
  • Microphone


Getting Started

Learn how to use your computer’s software to record your video by visiting:

Before recording, make sure:

  • Your microphone is on. Most computers and webcams have built-in microphones. Higher fidelity microphones can be plugged-in via the ‘mic in’ port.
  • Your webcam is properly connected.
  • Conduct a test recording to ensure your microphone and webcam are working properly; your background looks good; and you’re happy with the position of the camera is good and the volume level.



  • Look directly into the camera (the viewer’s eye).
  • Try to relax so the recording feels natural and engaging.
  • Remember to breathe.
  • Don’t be afraid to stop and start over.



When you’re happy with your video abstract, create a YouTube account and upload your video!

Enter information about your video in the My Videos page.

Be sure to include a link to your article in your video caption so viewers can quickly and easily get to your published paper.

When your video is online at YouTube:

  • E-mail the link to Kathy Daniels at SLAS ( Kathy will coordinate with SAGE to add the link to your published article and will promote it via SLAS.
  • Share your link with your friends, fans and followers on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.
  • Post the video to Kudos.
  • E-mail the link to your video abstract to professors, students, colleagues and friends. Don’t be shy – spread the word!



Examples of SAGE Video Abstracts

Video Abstracts from the Theory, Culture & Society Journal

SAGE Channel on YouTube